Do not ignore peopleHello, how are you? Hope you are well and that you have had a good day so far. Now, tell me, isn’t it nice to be asked, to be recognised, to be noticed? I am writing this from the Rudding Park Hotel, near Harrogate, where I am speaking tomorrow morning. I arrived to be met by a cheery smile, to be asked “how has your day been today Mr Jones?” and to be escorted to my room with a bright conversation about the area. Once in my room I rang room service: “Good evening Mr Jones, how are you this evening?” was EXACTLY how the phone was answered..! Wow, what a hotel…! I was so impressed, the FIRST THING I did was to open up my laptop and write a FIVE STAR REVIEW on Trip Advisor. The hotel had made me feel welcome, as though they were running the hotel just for me. So many hotels simply seem to ignore their visitors.

And, sadly, so do many online businesses. The chances are you have emailed some website or other, never to get a reply. Or you have asked a question in a company’s support forum or ticket system, only to have to wait weeks to get an answer, if at all. Many companies simply build a website and leave it there; it’s rather like building a retail store, dressing the windows so people can see what you have to offer and then letting people in the doors only for them to find there are no staff.

Human beings do not like being ignored. And this is confirmed by a new piece of research from psychologists at Purdue University, Indiana, USA. They found that people feel good even if they get a sense that strangers warm to them. Being ignored by people walking past meant that the participants in the study felt negative. It shows that simple connections are all you need to make people feel more connected with you.

Online that means the language you use – hopefully you feel I am writing this directly to you, you can almost hear me speak it to you. Also, it means answering comments as quickly as possible, dealing with emails immediately and doing everything you can to make people feel you are not ignoring them. Much business online is missed because websites simply ignore their visitors.

If you want to discover how it feels to NOT be ignored, to be welcomed and treated as a friend, check yourself in to Rudding Park…!

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